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fish kill on the rock river


Guest rich mc
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Guest rich mc

it happened by GrandDetour ,north of Dixon and below the lower Sterling dam . thats all the papers are saying. idnr biologists are checking the river today. rich

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Just how much water did you guys get? I read the story and it appears from looking at gmaps that the crash was a good 1.5 miles from the lower north branch. I guess I have to assume that with the water being up to the tracks any gullies along side filled with water would eventually lead to the river. I've actually driven by that intersection many times but not for a while.

 

So sad for all the people that got hurt/killed in this :( Too bad for the rivers also :( Some of these types of accidents should be able to be avoided. I know they are called accidents for a reason but if people would just slow down or stop and try to think ahead and "what if" when circumstances are not "normal" maybe some "accidents" could be avoided.

 

I don't know, I guess it's easier said than done especially when business is involved. It seems like every time I turn around though I'm telling my kids to slow down, stop and think about what you are going to do, what could the consequences be, what just happened, why did it happen, what could you have done differently to have a different outcome. Basically stop and think for a second before you act. Then five minutes later they trying to beat each other up and saying the other one started it :lol:

 

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I know this area real well and find it hard to believe that this terrible accident is going to affect the Kish.

There's a little run off stream that runs next to those track and if followed eventually dumps into the

cities man made ditches (cement) which eventually dumps into the Rock just north of the airport where

the sanitary site is. With all the rain we got on that day and with the help the fire departments the run off from the accident could reach the Rock easily. In order to get to the Kish the run off would have to go against the flow of the stream, on an up hill grade over lots of farm land. I just don't see that being too likely. I've seen how "flash flood" waters flow here in Rockford and can tell you that the first part of this post is probably going to be what the investigators find to be true. Rockford has a real problem with

rain run off. I live in the middle of town at least 5 miles from any river and get flood all the time. The city of Rockford knows that it has a problem but don't seem to be in too big of a hurry to correct it.

If anyone hears of anyway we can help with clean up please post.

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I'm not a survey expert so I'm not 100% sure the direction of water flow for that accident in the SE corner of town. The closest little streams or ditches that come to mind would be the stream that flows out of the little pond behind MC Sports or the little creek that flows in at Espensheid.

 

Either way it is a bad situation for a lot of people and the natural resources. We can vent and maybe that will help a little. Hopefully the impacts were minimal and responsible party will do the right thing and make a generous donation back to restore the resource.

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The word is that the train wreck is to blame. Downstream the kill is massive!!!!! I have a couple of folks who I have talked with that have been on the river and talked with the DNR. Tons upon tons of catfish and carp are dead. At least some smallies are dead as well. My father in law in P-town estimated at its peak, there were 1000 dead fish floating by per hour. They are using end loaders to scoop out dead fish at the upper dam in Sterling. This is not good..............at all! From what my father in law has been told, the spill came out of the kish and into the rock.

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You're right, Paul. The little creek at Mulford/RR tracks is the one that enters the Kish at Espenscheid. When I heard that someone was trying to connect the wreck and the fish kill it made no sense. It still makes no sense. It would have to wipe out everything in the Kish from Espenscheid to the Rock, and then everything in the rock between Rockford and Grand Detour. I really think we would have had MAJOR kills up here if the kills down there were from the ethanol. Also, the way the fire burned, there probably wasn't too much that made it off-site.

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I must have been typing while you were, Jonn. I haven't investigated personally, but like I said, it seems the Kish would be completely killed off. Has anyone heard anything to that effect? I'll have to do some checking tomorrow.

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Guest rich mc

i could only imagine how bad it would be if we had low water. i would guess that the high water would help disapate it. hopefully the smallies were up the tribs and out of the main flow . i see what i can get from the idnr. rich

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I just got back from looking for dead fish on the Kish, and I'm happy to say I found none. I checked at Perryville, then at Blackhawk Road first. I was saving the most obvious spot for last. Near Mulford Road there is a huge bend where the water is pretty stagnant. It's the only spot I know of on the Kish that has lily pads. If dead fish were to accumulate somwewhere, this would be the place. Nothing.

 

I saw a few tubers as well, and asked if they'd seen any dead fish. Their slurred babbling led me to believe that they hadn't seen any dead fish, either.

 

If the kill downstream is from the wreck, maybe the ethanol isn't deadly until it mixes with the water completely, and it took the time/agitation from Cherry Valley to the Rock to completely mix? Just thinking out loud.

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I also went out on wed. looking for signs of dead fish or signs of life. I watched a young father and his two small children at Kishwaukee Forest Preserve catch smallies along the bank floating a worm and bobber. The kids were happy and enjoying themselves, so I was pleased to see signs of life. As far as dead fish........Nothing.

I called the bait shop at the Oregon dam on the Rock River and they have seen no dead fish.

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That is good news for the Kish. It may be one of those cases where the ethanol floated and it just took a few lowhead dams to stir it up enough to start killing fish. Still tragic news for the lower Rock river. I watched some of those youtube vidoes. I also spoke with some of the local DNR at one of the last shockings. They had mentioned some strong populations of smallmouth bass in the grand detour and Prophetstown's areas showing up in shockings. It looks like that area got hit the hardest. It was speculated that there were some possible state record walleyes through that section of the rock river along with 60#+ flathead catfish. I don't fish that area but it is still a shame for the resource and those who enjoy it.

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Here's what I don't understand.......

From what I do understand ethanol is very dalutable. So I don't see how it can travel 30 to 40 miles

in a river down stream and then start to effect fish. It seems to me that this tragedy

must be the cause of something else. We should be hearing test results of the fish they tested at

any time now. They say that they should be able to make an announcement by the end of the week

on the cause of the fish kill. I wish there was a link we could click on to check the progress of their

findings.

I really don't think this is caused from the train wreck in Rockford, but then again I kinda hope they

can tie the train wreck into it because then we can hold Canadian Railways responsably for a super

great restocking program. STOP THE PRESSES!!!!----They said on TV while I was typing this post that

they will announce the results today. Channel 17 WTVO, Steve Staddleman @ 5pm. I'll be at work! I'll

be checking back here when I get off. Hope to see something from you fine gentleman. 2nd shift sucks!

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Ethanol is "lighter" or rather less dense than water. I believe water is the standard at 1gm/ml. Ethanol's density is .789 gm/ml. Another way of looking at it is ethanol is 20% lighter than water. If the ethanol spill is found to be responsible for the fish kill I suppose it is possible that due to the high water and swift current that the ethanol got swept downstream in the top section of the water column and then slowly mixed in with the water once it hit obstructions dams etc. It looks like we'll have an answer today at five...

 

I almost forgot. I was in town (rockford) last night for a scout meeting for my oldest and I was talking to a couple guys and one of them said that he saw on the news or read that someone called the police about a problem with tracks and the railway was contacted about it twenty minutes before the accident. Anybody know anything about this? Absolutley tragic if it is a truism.

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I almost forgot. I was in town (rockford) last night for a scout meeting for my oldest and I was talking to a couple guys and one of them said that he saw on the news or read that someone called the police about a problem with tracks and the railway was contacted about it twenty minutes before the accident. Anybody know anything about this? Absolutley tragic if it is a truism.

 

 

I have seen several news report that were saying the same thing.....the tracks were reported washed out and they did not stop the train.

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It seems the county 911 center received at least four calls prior to the accident. One guy said he called after seeing the tracks and ties hanging in mid-air over the washout. The railroad was allegedly made aware of the problem a good twenty minutes prior to the derailment. I'm pretty sure some heads will roll over this. If it's true, I certainly hope so. Here's a link to our newspaper coverage.

 

http://www.rrstar.com/news/publicsafety/x7...-4-days-of-news

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Per the WTVO News report, no evidence of ethanol was found in the fish kill areas. The EPA hasn't yet determined a cause, but they can't link it to the derailment.

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Guest rich mc

i did a job for a retired railroad person, he said he heard that someone called in the washed out tracks an hour before ,and 2of the 3 rr companies were notified , guess which canadian company wasnt notified . he was on a safety train event to sterling on monday and could see and smell the fish in the rock. rich

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:( hey folks out there sad days are ahead for us rock river fisherman. Friday6/19/09 nights rain was BRUTAL 3 1/2 inches of rain in 5 hours. I watched a river running down north avenue toward the rock river. The Oregon damn rose 3feet. I stopped at my usual high water spot found NO FISH drove south to dixon saw a lot of dead carp. some cats :( some dead smallies :( up to 17 inch :( to many 3lb walleye :( stopped at TJ`s bait shop OREGON IL. she had the same sad stories. My thoughts on this are that the ethanol floated down river fast. killing all the carp sucking sudds at the top. with the farm field run off (fertilizers) taking out even morefish. sad sad sad On 6/7/09 I watched ILDNR release 25000 fingerling walleye at castlerock. going out driving friday, report more later. when the river calms down Ill get the boat out.
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